This summer, we will be sharing weekly devotions to encourage you to think deeply about the scripture text and keywords of the upcoming sermon. Our prayer is that this special devotional series will encourage you in DEEPENING YOUR ROOTS in Christ this summer.
When I was a child, I would run down to the river near my small village every day after school. One of the older gentleman in the village, Jacob, would always be there sitting on the river bank with his fishing pole, trying to catch a fish, usually without much luck. Since I did not have a fishing pole of my own, I would sit with him and just talk. To me, he would know so much about everything. I could ask him any question and he could always give me an answer. But strangely enough, there was more to what he was saying than just facts. When I looked into his eyes as he was talking, he had this look that led me to believe he had wisdom beyond just knowledge and facts.  I asked him about it and he answered by saying,” I listen to God for his instructions how to know what is right and what is wrong and the wisdom to know the difference. So when we obey God’s word, wisdom will come.” “ You are so wise”, I said to Jacob. “I hope I can be just like you.” Without speaking again, we just sat there on the river bank together for a very long time. I recognized that Jacob was truly wise.
Lectionary Text : I Kings 2:10-12, 3:3-14

  Then David slept with his ancestors, and was buried in the city of David. The time that David reigned over Israel was forty years; he reigned seven years in Hebron, and thirty-three years in Jerusalem. So Solomon sat on the throne of his father David; and his kingdom was firmly established.

Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of his father David; only, he sacrificed and offered incense at the high places. The king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, for that was the principal high place; Solomon used to offer a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night; and God said, “Ask what I should give you.” And Solomon said, “You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant my father David, because he walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart toward you; and you have kept for him this great and steadfast love, and have given him a son to sit on his throne today. And now, O Lord my God, you have made your servant king in place of my father David, although I am only a little child; I do not know how to go out or come in. And your servant is in the midst of the people whom you have chosen, a great people, so numerous they cannot be numbered or counted. Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, able to discern between good and evil; for who can govern this your great people?”
It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this. God said to him, “Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches, or for the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right,    I now do according to your word. Indeed I give you a wise and discerning mind; no one like you has been before you and no one like you shall arise after you.   I give you also what you have not asked, both riches and honor all your life; no other king shall compare with you. If you will walk in my ways, keeping my statutes and my commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your life.”
This Week's Word: Wisdom
Wisdom, our word for this week’s devotion, is very difficult to define. Wisdom is one of those qualities that we easily recognize in others, but cannot explain. We might be able to see and hear someone speak in such a way that when they do, we turn around and look and listen. But we must understand that wisdom is more than intelligence or the ability to recall facts.. It is the ability, as one author writes, to think and act in such a way that by applying “common sense” in the choices that we make everyday, we are productive and are living in the manner God intends. When we picture a wise person, we might see someone who is humble, considerate, peace-loving, merciful, sincere, honest, and are living a God centered life.
The Bible gives us examples of people who had wisdom and were productive in God’s eyes. The Book of James, considered the New Testament book of wisdom, talks much about God’s gift of wisdom. James saw the value of wisdom and understood that it was important to pray and ask God for wisdom. He asked the question in James 3;13 ‘Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom.”

Jesus, throughout the New Testament, was said to be filled with God’s wisdom. Those who heard him speak and preach, knew through his words, that he was filled with wisdom and strength.
God’s servant Solomon is well known throughout the Bible for asking God for wisdom. In our scripture passage for this week, Solomon asks God for a listening heart (understanding mind) in order to judge God’s people and to discern between good and evil. God felt that Solomon had not asked for material gifts for himself but had asked instead for the gift of wisdom which would benefit the people he would lead as a king. God was so pleased with Solomon’s request that he also granted him wealth, fame and a long life. But wisdom-- the ability to discern good from evil; the ability to listen well and to judge rightly, were to be most valued traits of the great King Solomon who we will read about in our scriptures this week.   "
Quotes:

The journey of a thousand miles must begin with a small step. --Chinese Proverb

Knowledge speaks but wisdom listens.- Jimi Hendrix

Wisdom begins in words - Socrates

Wisdom never lies - HOMER

Knowledge comes but wisdom lingers - Alfred Lord Tennyson

Points to Ponder
  • Do you know someone that you consider to be a wise person?
  • How do you show others that you have wisdom and strength?
  • Do you seek to obey God's will by knowing what is right and what is wrong and choosing the right path in your life?
Blessing
Let us reflect on the story at the beginning of this devotion. We know the young boy was intrigued by the old man’s wisdom and had asked him how he had become so wise. Jacob’s response was simple. We must obey God and the word given to us. We must choose God’s way to live our lives. When we do that, others will see the strength and wisdom in us and that strength and wisdom comes from God.
So we must go forth this week asking God to show us our own clear path, as we pray, read his word and listen quietly for that guidance. Others may then recognize God’s wisdom and strength in us. This is result of our obedience to him.
May your journey this week be filled with God’s comfort, strength, and wisdom, knowing he is by your side holding your hand every step of the way.
This Week's Prayer Prompt
  • Pray for Dave and Susan as they enjoy some vacation time with Johnny and Cathy Paton.
  • Pray for Johnny Paton as he prepares to preach and lead us in worship on Sunday.
  • Pray for our Sunday School, Music, Missions, and Discipleship leaders as they commit to lead children, youth, and adults this coming year.
  • Pray for our new staff members, Scott Welborn and Melinda Sawyer, as they begin their work among us.
This week's devotion was written by Susanne Warren.